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Inaugural Lecture by Jonas Nielsen: “Global lives and the relevance of integrative geography”

  Scientific Talks

Date: Tuesday, 11th of February 2020, 4:15 p.m.

Venue: Erwin-Schrödinger Zentrum, Rudower Chaussee 26, Berlin-Adlershof, room 0'119

Host:PD Dr. Mohsen Makki, Geography Department, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Speaker:Prof. Dr. Jonas Østergaard Nielsen, Leader of research group “Integrative Geography”, IRI THESys, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

All interested people are cordially invited!

Globalisation, complexity, and environmental problems challenge traditional boundaries between disciplines, methods, activism and science, humans and nature. This has implications for how we do research. Integration of scientific approaches, diverting worldviews, actors, scales, political belief systems, and civil society concerns are required. This is the focus of Integrative geography. Neither human nor physical geography alone, it emphasises no particular method and belongs to no specific scale. It is problem driven and solution oriented. In my talk, I will highlight the relevance of integrative geography in a world defined by connectivity and problems that we as scientists need to help solve. Focusing predominantly on adaptation to climate change and land-use change, I will illustrate how questions around human-environment relations open up for such work. In particular, I will show how the global is mixed into locally lived lives and vice-versa, forcing us to engage with causal relations both outwards and inwards in time and space. Solving epistemological problems concerning causal relations in a globalized world is not just an academic exercise.

Operationalizing such insights for achieving sustainability will become increasingly required. The talk will finish considering the implications of a more normative science and the part geography can play in this.